Propaganda proceeds by psychological manipulations, character modifications, by creation of stereotypes useful when the time comes

New Rule from this post from the right-wing hate mongers and Bush genuflectors at Newsbusters, Missing Bush Documents: Another Jack Cafferty-Endorsed Conspiracy Theory, Posted by Matthew Balan on April 13, 2007 – 18:50.

On Friday’s Situation Room, CNN commentator Cafferty was doing publicity for the Bush-hating site, reciting some of the many quotes blogger Glenn Greenwald collected from a variety of liberal media sources, such as the New York Times, Newsweek, NPR, and the Associated Press. These quotes from news articles “tend to suggest a pattern,” as Cafferty put it, of missing documents and e-mails with the Bush administration.

Memorize the rule, a fringe nationalistic right-wing site says that if its printed in Newsweek it cannot be true, but just this past January they ran this post: Posted by Noel Sheppard on January 11, 2007 – 18:10 , Mega-Kudos to Newsweek’s Samuelson: Entitlement Programs Put Country at Risk in which they lap up the utter nonsense that published by Newsweek that cuts in Social Security benefits, raising the retirement age, and cutting Medicare will erase the incredible national debt created by a Republican Congress and their Decider-in-Chief. Then again on December 6, 2006 Newsbusters could hardly restrain its unquestioning – as in non-fact checking glee on another story from Newsweek, Posted by Noel Sheppard on December 18, 2006 – 18:08., Media Shocker: Newsweek Reports Iraq Economy Booming

In the midst of all the civil war, quagmire, cataclysmic, doom and gloom reports about Iraq comes a shocking story from an even more shocking source. According to Newsweek, Iraq’s economy is booming

Iran ready to step in if summit fails

Under the plan, Iraq would agree to undertake a series of economic and political reforms in exchange for international investment and financial concessions.

Mr. al-Dabbagh said that, despite Iraq’s vast oil and gas reserves, the country faces a five-year “bottleneck” trying to jump-start the economy and reform social and legal services while dealing with an increasingly violent insurgency.

Iraq’s foreign debt stood at about $120 billion when Saddam Hussein’s government fell in 2003. The United States forgave some $4.1 billion in Iraqi debt in late 2004, and the “Paris Club” of wealthy creditor nations pledged a major debt-forgiveness program.

Without the influx of foreign aid Iraq wouldn’t have an economy and much of its future plans depend on debt forgiveness that totals in the tens of billions. If the fringe Right thinks that is a healthy economy then so much for their grossly over estimated expertise on all things economic.
Even if we move on to NPR as a liberal news outlet that according to the rabid Right cannot tell the truth, Posted by Noel Sheppard on May 8, 2006 – 09:48, Shocking News From NPR: Oil Companies Aren’t Gouging Consumers After All.

For months, the media have blamed virtually anything but free market forces for the rise in oil and gas prices. NBC’s Lisa Myers attributed these increases to greed on a recent Nightly News report stating almost disgustedly “Exxon earned 9.5 cents on every dollar of gasoline and oil sold, cashing in at every stage of the process.”

Imagine the nerve of ExxonMobil actually making a profit. Oh the humanity.

The Right does have some strange love fixation for straw men. They don’t mention in the piece exactly what major Democrat or even liberal media figure that has staked out the position that oil companies should not make a profit. The Right as usual cannot tell the difference between capitalism and greed. They cannot tell the difference or are unwilling to acknowledge that some individuals and businesses rig the game at the expense of consumers and investors. Anger at oil chief’s $400m retirement package

Exxon says the value of the package is at least $258m, which comes on top of a retirement bonus of $98.4m. This largesse makes his salary and bonus for 2005, $49m, look modest by comparison, but it was still one of the biggest pay deals for an executive last year and it has stoked claims that big oil companies are profiteering from the soaring price of crude. Exxon made a profit of $36.1bn in 2005, the biggest ever by any company in the world.

Well you get the idea. If Newsweek, NPR etc. run stories that dovetail with the manufactured reality of the Right then they are more then willing to site those stories as evidence to justify their fringe agenda. No coincidence that the stories the Right fonds over don’t hold up to two minutes of fact checking. That doesn’t keep sites like Busters from siting them as though they were some newly revealed holy grail. This is in marked contrast to when multiple news outlets and sources run news that Newsbuster and their right-wing clone sites disagree. Then despite an avalanche of proof they simply shift into denial mode with the all damning tirade about the entire media being liberal and only the great grand priests of the ultimate truth Newsbusters knows the real story. Newsbusters is outrageous, but helpful in a way. Like the vast majority of the rabid Right you know you’re backed them into a corner when instead of presenting facts to refute your argument they start flailing about arms waving  yelling liberal media liberal media. Far Right pundit and media darling himself Bill O’Reilly is always good for a regular hypocritical whine about the media of which he is a major figure, O’Reilly on Media Matters: “a far-left swamp pit … that just attacks people with whom they disagree”

O’Reilly elaborated that “they’ll take an hour discussion we do here on The Radio Factor, and then they’ll transcribe two minutes of it and leave out all the other stuff. … [I]t’s a cheap game. They’ve been doing this for years. And everybody with any intelligence knows it.” As with his previous attacks on Media Matters, O’Reilly did not offer a single example of Media Matters’ taking his remarks out of context. Media Matters provides transcripts, with full context, and, when available, audio or video clips of O’Reilly’s remarks in items about him.

Unfounded accusations, name calling and angry rhetoric empty of anything resembling a cogent argument are O’Reilly and the far Right’s modus operandi. Hypocrisy is their daily drug and their crutch. This is probably why the Right has such contempt for the rule of law. The law uses facts, history and rules of evidence. All things that the Right doesn’t want to be bothered with. They want to move their agenda along based on emotion – fear and anger most of all. Just as the Right keeps saying they are pro capitalism when they are pro unearned wealth, they are not advocates of truth in media as much as pro right-wing propaganda.

Unsentimental, but fond farewell to Kurt Vonnegut by Lev Grossman.

“(Propaganda) proceeds by psychological manipulations, character modifications, by creation of stereotypes useful when the time comes – The two great routes that this sub-propaganda takes are the conditioned reflex and the myth” – Jacques Ellul